Air quality alert issued for Saturday



ELLSWORTH — The state Department of Environmental Protection has issued an air quality alert for Saturday, May 28, the beginning of Memorial Day weekend.

Ground-level ozone concentrations are expected to climb through the day Saturday and reach unhealthy levels along the coast from Kittery to Acadia.

Ozone levels have been in the unhealthy range for several days this week in southern New England. Winds are expected to begin pushing these high levels toward Maine after midnight Friday.

Moderate ozone levels are expected for the western part of the state. Particle pollution levels also will likely reach moderate levels along the coast from Kittery to Acadia and in western regions of the state.

At elevated ozone levels, children, healthy adults who exert themselves and individuals suffering from a respiratory disease, such as asthma, bronchitis or COPD, can experience reduced lung function and irritation. When this happens, individuals may notice a shortness of breath, coughing, throat irritation and/or experience an uncomfortable sensation in their chest.

To protect your health during periods of unhealthy air quality, adjust your schedule to avoid strenuous outdoor activity during peak hours.

Please consult the Maine CDC website for information on the health impacts of extreme heat and appropriate actions to take. Visit http://www.maine.gov/dhhs/mecdc/environmental-health/heat/.

The Maine CDC Asthma Prevention and Control Program has asthma information available at its website, http://www.maine.gov/dhhs/mecdc/population-health/mat/index.htm.

For more information on asthma control, visit EPA’s website at www.epa.gov/asthma.

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